| Mail |
You might also like: WoW Insider, Joystiq, and more

Reader Comments (19)

Posted: Jan 10th 2011 12:05PM DemonXaphan said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
True i do see a rise in the digital sales rising more and more as people don't want to spend time driving to a Gamestop, BestBuy or WalMart and deal with crowds there unless it's a special CE box they want.

Besides, lots of indie games are going digital and lots of them do play great. Steam or D2D is helping this digital revolution take off to becoming more popular.

Posted: Jan 10th 2011 12:50PM markt50 said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
I'm honestly suprised this is even news these days. My first port of call for any PC game is Steam, if I can't find it there I look around on places like direct2drive and might even go so far as to check out the EA Store if there was a specific EA title i wanted. The last place I would look these days is in a shop for an actual box.

I vaguely remember my first few digitial purchases in the early days of steam when I really didn't like it and much prefered to go to a shop in town and pickup a real box, with a real disk, and a manual I could sniff (Yes, I'm a manual sniffer lol).

I think the only time I ever pick up 'boxed' titles now is as an impulse purchase, a lot of the big supermarkets in the UK stock games these days, so while I'm in Morrisons getting my bread and milk I might pick up a cheap PC game while I'm there :) I think this is the only area where digital sales lag behind, the pricing of digital goods doesn' reduce as quickly as in a shop, so a game will stay on sale for £40 for a lot longer on steam when you could probably get it for half the price in a bargain bucket in the town.

I think that digital sales aren't as much of a big deal to the average MMO player anyway, lets face it, we're all used to downloading gigs of data for the latest beta, or that new expansion pack. Some are used to paying for digital goods via ingame stores etc. A part of me feels sad when I see that solitary and dusty PC games shelf in the corner of my local Games store, but I guess this is the future.

Posted: Jan 10th 2011 1:11PM Silverangel said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
No...I'm not used to downloading gigs of data.

I have a 5GB cap on my mobile broadband in my rural location. If it's a download, I can't buy or play. I really appreciated the Age of Conan expansion box, and bought it, but it still hit me with 2GB+ of downloading in one night, and now I can't play anything for the rest of the month because of not enough bandwidth left. The whole download model is bad news for me. And even back when I had a better plan in the city, I couldn't stand Steam.

Posted: Jan 10th 2011 2:16PM DiscordSK said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Silverangel
Ugh, thats terrible. I'm on a 60 gig limit and even that forces me to be careful as I tend to but up against the cap month after month.

Unfortunately, thats not going to change and is just going to get worse as more detailed (and larger) content is streamed to your computer. Games get larger and the market is definately shifting to a download heavy type model.
Reply

Posted: Jan 10th 2011 1:28PM hami83 said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
Not even a year ago people were screaming murder and that digital purchases will never be popular, even though myself and many others believe it was going to happen.

And now it will. lol
I still stand by my timeline of 5-7 years before games are sold ALMOST completely digitally.

And CD and Movie DVDs are next to non-existence, however movie and music piracy increases a TON during this change. Mainly because the music/movie industry has some of the stupidest rules regarding digital content. I.E. you have to buy it again if you lose it for whatever reason, you can't just redownload it.

THAT or cloud services will take over, though I'm expecting 10-15 years for that. Till the telecommunications industry gets it's heads out of their a....

Posted: Jan 10th 2011 2:04PM real65rcncom said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
" In fact, he admits that the "dirty little secret" of EA is that some of its F2P titles end up being the games players drop the most money on per month, such as those who pay upwards of $5,000 a month for FIFA Ultimate Team."

Not a surprise. That's why companies were pushing for the model for some time now. They know most people don't have any self control if you sell things for $1 here and $1 there. They just finally figured out how to do it with non-perishables like gaming content, but this has gone on for years in retail.

"Buy one, Get one Free!" and such isn't really and it makes me laugh because of all the fans who keep saying they want F2P games.

Posted: Jan 10th 2011 3:07PM cic said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
With the recent CRTC decision on UBB, digital sales will lose their popularity here in Canada... sad.

Posted: Jan 10th 2011 6:56PM mmogaddict said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@cic
I have no idea what you are saying. Might like to explain your point a little.
Reply

Posted: Jan 10th 2011 3:24PM Sunlover said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
I used to work at Gamestop and told my coworkers all the time that digital distribution would dominate and possibly kill brick and mortar stores for media content purchases. I pointed at the popularity of Steam and the potential of PS Network, XBox Live, and other non-video game related digital stores. Only a few coworkers and customers understood and agreed, the rest resisted and were doubtful, their opinions and beliefs regarding the issue being obviously biased (no more Gamestop = no more job) and the need to have physical goods or the ability to trade, take home copies, pirate/burn them etc.

I honestly don't understand how anyone didn't see all of this coming, or how they could attempt to resist the inevitability of it all. It's easy to see, just by reading comments on blogs daily in fact, how resistant people are to change and different things. In the end, all I had to do was put 2 and 2 together: Digital distribution means less physical waste and production costs, less shipping costs, less reliance on stores and the "middle men", and less trading/borrowing/renting, which all equals more profit for the companies who make them. And not just the big companies and producers, but the little guys too. This is why you see a lot more indie games developers getting the credit and enjoying the success they deserve. Digital distribution allows them to access large user bases on already popular services like Steam, XBox Live, etc. These are the "new" middle men" for sales, but anyone using them will tell you that the cost of selling through them is much cheaper than the traditional, physically packaged and produced distribution of the past.

And it spreads across genres too, so it isn't just video games, but servces like Amazon, Itunes, Apple I-Store (or whatever it's called, lol), the Android Store, and so on and so forth. I personally know 3 people who have either written books, made music, or developed apps who have been able to find some measure of success from selling their good digitally.

It empowers the big guys and little guys alike, and gets the games/content/goods directly from the hands of the producers right into the hands of the consumers. How could that not be the future? How could anything but this be what was supposed to happen?

Posted: Jan 10th 2011 3:55PM eggmanjr said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
wow some players are spending 5k a month on an online soccer game? really? That's crazy.

Posted: Jan 10th 2011 4:57PM Dblade said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
I don't think it will work for console games. Look at the PSP go, a completely digital download system, widely thought of as a failure. I'm not even sure for PC games it's all that hot: I don't like downloading a game or a patch over days.

If anything it's shown that digital downloading really only has worked for small downloads on a wide scale. Xboxlive, Ipad apps, etc. The PC market works because brick and mortar stopped carrying them due to piracy and return issues. I don't think we'll ever see it go beyond that.

Posted: Jan 10th 2011 5:31PM Graill440 said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
Such an ignorant statement.

"F2P titles end up being the games players drop the most money on per month"

But the weak minds will continue to use the misleading and misbranded products thinking they are getting something for free when they never will. Like idiots that play slot machines. I hold both in the same demographic.

Deceit, fraud, intentional misleading of the public weak minded enough to swallow the spin, Thats why these companies use that term, "everyone loves something free....."


Pathetic.

Posted: Jan 10th 2011 5:48PM SnarlingWolf said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
It always amazes me how many people push back against everything going digital sales/downloads. The people saying they will only buy a game in a box from a store and will never do it digital. It is like watching a person who thinks newspapers will continue to be around, or landline phones, or books printed on paper. Those people who just fear change because they got used to one way and can't adapt.

It doesn't take a genius, or even just a CEO, to see a trend as basic as this. Even a mildly observant person saw this trend years ago as the way all things are headed. So to make the statement now, when the trend has been trending for years, shows a bit of cluelessness on how the markets have been shaping up. How does someone who can only point out the obvious when it is sitting there smacking everyone in the face get to such a high level in a company?

To make the statement 7-8 years ago would have been nice and showed he was paying attention. To make it now should make the company feel embarassed that they finally realized what was happening.

Posted: Jan 10th 2011 6:56PM StClair said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@SnarlingWolf : As someone who used to be one of those, I'll explain my reasoning.

First was the notion of actually owning the software (rather than just renting it, and hoping the servers won't go up in vapor next month); however, the companies themselves have steadily eroded that "ownership" model, even for single-player games. It's gotten to the point where you're not ALLOWED to play a game you bought on a disc without connecting to some service. So if you're not really buying the game to have forever, why not not-really-buy-it online?

Second was the types of games I enjoyed and how I enjoyed them. I was, as noted, more into solitary, buy-once games; afterward, I'd put them on the shelf and maybe pull them out again in a couple of years to play again. I didn't want to be stuck with ongoing costs like a subscription. These days I'm much more into online, multi-player games, and have more spare income to spend on subs and DLC and impulse buys on Steam.

Third, because it's related to (1) but not as important as (2), is the inevitable decline (due to printing costs, etc) of what you get when you buy a game at a store. The days of full-size boxes, thick manuals, etc are long gone - now you get a DVD case and maybe a thin pamphlet or just a PDF manual on the disc itself. So you're not actually giving up much by downloading.
Reply

Posted: Jan 11th 2011 1:00PM cic said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@cic
Arg, wtf is up with this comment system? seems buggier than the previous.
Reply

Posted: Jan 10th 2011 7:03PM mmogaddict said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
Currently I have 383 Games on Steam and it is my distributor of choice these days. The only problem with it is certain publishers who are using grossly infalted prices to certain regions, like Australia where we have traditionally paid $AUD 79~ $AUD 89 for games when the exchange rate was 1 AUD to 0.7 USD.

Currently the AUD to USD exchange rate is 1 to 1.

But the prices of SOME games on Steam are USD 49 for an American player and USD 89 for an Australian player.

When that happens alot of people including myself are now buying psyical copies from places like www.ozgameshop.com which is actually a UK company selling UK psyhical copies to Australian players in AUD, with free delivery out of the UK at a price similar to Steams UK prices and far beneath Steams AU prices.

Posted: Jan 10th 2011 8:36PM winterborn said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
I will NEVER even look at a game that requires Steam or any other DRM Nazi software.

As a option to retail sure, then you can deal with all the issues that was your choice. There are reasons why every game has a huge Steam issues thread. Google "Steam sucks" and take the blinders off.

Forced/Mandatory DRM well then they can F@ck off !
RMT/DRM = Greed and Control.

Posted: Jan 11th 2011 9:28PM mmogaddict said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
Ahh makes sense now. Can't see a problem with it to be honest. It's the way the internet has always worked here in Australia. Currently my cap is 500 GB / month for around $70 / month.

Several years ago it was 20 GB / month for a similar amount of money.

We have foudn that market competition even amoungst a small number of ISP results in costs going down or bandwidth going up.

Featured Stories

WRUP: Queue zen

Posted on Sep 20th 2014 10:00AM

Betawatch: September 13 - 19, 2014

Posted on Sep 19th 2014 8:00PM

Engadget

Engadget

Joystiq

Joystiq

WoW Insider

WoW

TUAW

TUAW